Suspend Your Disbelief

Michael Shilling


Michael Shilling’s first novel, Rock Bottom, was published in 2009 by Back Bay Books/Little, Brown, and in 2011 will be staged as a musical by theLandless Theater Company in Washington DC. His stories have appeared in The SunFugue, andOther Voices, and he has written criticism for The Stranger. He lives in Seattle, where he is a Lecturer at Seattle University. In his free time, he writes a bunch of stuff, and plays the drums in a soul band.


Interviews |

Find Your Metaphor: An Interview with Daniel Orozco

Daniel Orozco’s debut has been a long time coming. Now fans of his prizewinning fiction can enjoy an entire collection, Orientation: And Other Stories. Michael Shilling calls him in Idaho to talk geographic love letters, G. Gordon Liddy, and the peculiar challenge of gimmicks.

Shop Talk |

Stories We Love: "A View of the Woods"

While Flannery O’Connor combined humor and sadism in ways as mysterious as they are effective, to me, the way she was able to render horrific actions in people and still somehow make me sympathetic is her greatest achievement—even more so when she breaks out of the highly symbolic framings of tales such as “A Good Man is Hard to Find” and “Good Country People.” While these are incredible stories, less-known ones, in which characters transcend her desire to make them mere chess pieces and instead achieve a full humanity, are where she truly scorches. “A View of the Woods” is […]

Interviews |

Stalking the Inner Celestial: An Interview with Michael Byers

Michael Shilling’s interview with Percival’s Planet author Michael Byers delves into the fascinating characters – both historical and imagined – that populate Byers’ novel, which deals with the 1930s discovery of Pluto. Shilling says, “Reminiscent of such lightweights as James and Welty, Byers’ work shines with studied and infuried illuminations of the imperfect spirit; he can map out this process of inner grappling with a lovely, intense, and disciplined artistry.”